By Morgan Montalvo
Residents of San Antonio's Northwest side on Tuesday evening got a chance to view, and voice concerns about, proposed upgrades to the Wurzbach Parkway.
The two-hour open house at Oak Meadow Elementary School attracted members of the public interested in Texas Department of Transportation plans to build an underpass beneath Northwest Military Highway, as well as add bike and pedestrian accommodations and unidirectional exits.
TxDoT spokeswoman Laura Lopez says the $30-million-dollar improvements address increasing congestion in one of the city's busiest traffic areas.
"This was the first part of Wurzbach Parkway that was built many years ago, and of course it has developed," Lopez says.
"There have been a lot of concerns regarding congestion in this area," she adds, "and so we want to help to alleviate that congestion."
Lopez says as traffic continues to increase in and around the busy intersection, "if we don't do something now, it's only going to make matters worse later on."
Frank Calverson, who lives in the area, supports the improvements but remains skeptical of TxDoT's ability to meet the project's deadlines.
"Any San Antonio resident who's paid attention to the Wurzbach Parkway construction knows it took an extremely long time to complete," he says. "If they're going to add improvements to Wurzbach Parkway, will that be more of the same?
"It is a fabulous road to use -it just took way longer than it should have," Calverson observes.
TxDoT projects a two-and-one-half-year period from start to finish for the parkway improvements around and under Northwest Military Highway, with construction to begin sometime in 2019.